Potassium is the third most abundant mineral in the body and it plays a crucial role in many bodily functions. In addition to helping speed along the healing of cuts and regulating blood pressure and fluid levels, potassium also helps to maintain the function of the heart and nervous system. If the body does not get enough potassium it needs, many serious side effects can occur like fatigue and weakness, abnormal heartbeat, diarrhea, and skin problems. People who have heart failure are even more at risk for developing problems if they do not get enough potassium in their diets. In order to stay healthy, people with heart failure need to make sure to include a variety of potassium rich foods in their daily diets.
Because potassium plays such an important role in maintaining normal heart function, it is important that heart failure patients make sure they eat enough foods rich in potassium to reach their daily recommended dosage. Many patients with heart failure take diuretics or other medications to help get rid of excess fluid. While these medications may help with the heart failure, they can also result in potassium loss so it is especially important to eat enough potassium rich foods to make up for that loss.
There are many foods rich in potassium from which to choose – from bananas and oranges to tomatoes and peas it is easy to add potassium rich foods to your diet. Potassium can be found in dried fruits like raisins and prunes as well as in fresh fruits like strawberries, watermelon, and cantaloupe. Dried vegetables such as beans and peas are good sources of potassium just as fresh vegetables like beets, spinach, and other leafy greens are also great sources. Even meats like turkey, fish, and beef are good sources of potassium.
People with heart failure need to take all kinds of extra precautions to make sure that they remain healthy and adding some potassium rich foods to a daily diet is one of the easier things to do. Even people with healthy hearts should be aware of the importance that potassium plays in the healthy function of the body. Without potassium the body cannot properly function. Do not risk your health and well-being – be sure to include enough foods rich in potassium in your daily diet to reach the recommended daily dosage of this vital mineral to keep your body healthy and happy.